Naming Your Novel


Firstly, I must say that I am clearlyย terrible at this blog thing. I go through phases where I don’t post anything for, ahem, months, and then spam my blog in the space of a week. It’s just the way things are for me right now, unfortunately, but I am going on holiday at the beginning of September, so hopefully I will have more ideas for content soon!

Anyway, one of the reasons why I have been so MIA recently is because I have started to re-edit my current work in progress and have been focusing on that. Whoever said writing was 90% editing and 10% creating was totally right. (Has anyone actually ever said that? Or did I just make it up? I think I said it!) It took me all of three months to actually write the thing, but it has now been four months of re-writing.

I think I am almost there, though. But one thing I am stuck on, and one thing I have always had trouble with, is naming my work. Looking back, I have always settled for a title on a story by naming it after the city it is placed in. Usually that is a fictional city that I have imagined in my head, or a fictional forest, or a fictional island with a creepy castle on it, (but that was a terrible story which I’d prefer not to think about!)

But now that I am nearing the end of writing, I really don’t want to fall into that trap again. My story is set, in part, in a fictional city, and I did initially name it after that city, but that was always a working title. I was never meant to actually use it. And now I am googling quotes that I can allude to, or thinking of alliterations, (which is a bit cheesy, I think) and thesaurusing (yes, I just made up that verb) the crap out of everything to do with time travel.

I like the idea of ‘timefaring’, as in seafaring, but in relation to time. But even that has been used before by others and I don’t want a cop out. I always use a cop out when naming my work, and considering this is the first piece of writing in years that I actually like, I want to do the thing justice.

I have a couple of ideas that are rolling around in my head right now, but I always feel like titling the work is sometimes the hardest part. And I always feel like you have to be really clever to come up with an awesome title, and I don’t feel like I am smart enough to do it. How did Steinbeck come up with Of Mice & Men? And how did Harper Lee settle on To Kill A Mockingbird? I mean, I know the meanings behind the titles, but thinking of them and settling on them, is another thing entirely. Everyone else’s work always sounds so much cleverer than my own, and its hard to have enough faith in myself, and belief in myself, to think of a smart but not too confusing title.


I am sure I’ll think of something I am happy with eventually, but when your mind goes to mush its hard to believe that will ever happen!

Now … back to figuring out a title for my work. And editing, of course, always editing.